000 °F). In the atmospheric electrical discharge.000 km/h (22. which typically occurs during thunderstorms . a leader of a bolt of lightning can travel at speeds of 36.‡ Lightning is an atmospheric discharge of electricity accompanied by thunder. and sometimes during volcanic eruptions or dust storms . hot enough to fuse silica sand into glass channels known as fulgurites which are normally hollow and can extend some distance into the ground.000 °C (54.000 mph) and can reach temperatures approaching 30. There are some 16 million lightning storms in the world every year .